Skip to main content

Teaching children life skills finally pays off

Personally I hate "advice" about how to raise children. We all have our own ideas and methods. Handed down from our own parents, because you know "I turned out OK", or learned from the examples of friends and other relatives. Or - showing my age - gleaned from the pages of parenting BOOKS, or more commonly now - the internet.

I know parenting advice from the internet is not always the best advice - but sometimes it's all we have. And here I am handing out some more.

Last weekend I was feeling a bit worn out having had a very busy week at work, following a big trip to a trade show and all the lead up to that. So actually it was more like a very busy month at work and I was wrecked.

So it was Saturday morning and there were no children's sports games, and no band concerts, and no birthday parties or other events that needed a Mum-taxi until at least late afternoon, so I was taking my time getting out of bed.

By some miracle my daughter Meg got out of bed all by herself. That's very unusual without some kicking and screaming, and by that I mean me kicking things and screaming at her that she will be late for school.

I heard her get up and start crashing about in the kitchen. Then I started smelling something good. Like really good. Sweet pancakey kinds of smells. So I got out of bed to investigate... and found this!
Kimono Daisy Japanese cotton napkin with pancake and strawberries

Meg looked at me and said simply, "You didn't have any of that shakey pancake mix that you usually buy for Mother's Day in the cupboard, so I looked up the recipe for pancakes on Taste.com.au. Do we have maple syrup?"

What is this miracle that has occurred? Not one miracle. A series of miracles!

Miracle One - my daughter is out of bed before midday. Miracle Two - she has used initiative to a) search for food without waking me up to ask where the food is, b) upon not finding the food she sought, used her initiative again to make her own alternative, and c) prepared enough for me and her brother to share!

I was so proud. And I told her so. She answered with Miracle Three, "It's lucky you taught me how to cook Mum", and then, "Oh, and I got one of your napkins out so we could take a picture of my pancakes and put them on your Kimono Daisy Instagram".

Well blow me down. It wasn't a series of miracles after all. It was due to my great parenting skills.

So this is my parenting tip of the week. Teach your children how to cook. How to read a recipe. Introduce them to Taste.com.au. They'll totally go for it if it's on the internet. Let them post pictures of their preparations on Instagram or social media. It doesn't count unless all their friends have "liked" it. No matter how watery the scrambled eggs, no matter how burnt the toast, no matter how misshapen the cookies, be full of praise. Let them add blue food colouring to everything. Let them experiment with flavours (my son went through a stage of adding dried mixed herbs to EVERYTHING).

One day, after cleaning up all the kitchen messes, and bandaging the burnt fingers, and choking down the smoothies of questionable ingredients, they might surprise you and manage to make something good all by themselves. They will be well on their way to self sufficiency when they eventually leave home at age 35. And next time they say, "What is there to eat Mum?", you can tell them to go make something themselves.

Have you let your kids help with the cooking? Or even let them loose in the kitchen by themselves? Disasters? Masterpieces? Any budding Mini Master Chefs out there? What's their go-to recipe?

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

DIY Beeswax Wraps - the easy way!

It's well into the school holidays and we finally dragged ourselves out of bed before lunchtime and got to work on making our own beeswax wraps.

I'd been meaning to try this for months but we had a hold up with buying the wax. I wanted to get genuine beeswax from a local Australian bee farm. Not some watered down dodgy version from China. So I got online and ordered some through eBay from a nice local bee farm in Wollombi, NSW. And then it got lost in the post! I wanted to give it a bit of time to be fair and ended up waiting an extra 3 weeks, but no wax. Luckily the seller was very kind and sent me another block of beeswax, which finally turned up about a month after I originally planned to try making my own beeswax wraps.
So, after much online research, Meg and I decided that simple is best and we were going with the most simple way to make our own beeswax wraps. Beeswax + Fabric = Wrap. We may try something fancier later if we get enthusiastic.

First - we gathered our suppl…

Say NO to plastic bags! Well... as much as you can anyway...

Last week on the Australian TV Show The Project, Waleed Aly made an impassioned plea for Australians in NSW, VIC and QLD to lobby our politicians to ban single use plastic bags in our states. You can watch the story here:

https://tenplay.com.au/channel-ten/the-project/top-stories-april-2017/banthebag

I am totally in support of this and always try to use my own foldable fabric carry bags whenever I'm at the supermarket. It helps that we sell foldable shopping bags through our business, but one of the reasons we do that is because I am so in support of them.
So, I thought I should really try harder to cut my use of plastic bags further. I've already reduced my use of plastic wrap by using reusable containers that have lids. I have some really handy ceramic ones with PET plastic lids that I've been using for years.

Where I've hit a stumbling block is buying fresh meat and fish. If I buy it in a supermarket it comes packaged on a foam tray covered with plastic w…

I have Confidence in Sunshine!

This post has not much to do with Kimono Daisy fabrics, and everything to do with being a proud Mum who wants to show off. In my defense, it does have to do with Japanese culture (vaguely) and includes sewing - which is totally fabric related.

The reason I have not had time for a real blog post is that I have been busy helping my daughter Meg (age 12) finish off her Astro Boy stilt walking costume for Comic Gong, a festival of comic art held in Wollongong just down the road from us. Not that I actually helped much, I was mostly in charge of rushing out to buy extra supplies and passing the pins etc. Also, I discovered that Free Comic Book Day was the weekend before Comic Gong, and stupidly suggested to Meg that if she finished her costume a week early, she could enter the cosplay competition at our local comic store, Comic Cafe, as a test run.

Well... as any parent with children on a project deadline knows, it can quickly turn to tears. Firstly, being new to the whole sewing machine t…